The former UFC Lightweight Champion, Rafael dos Anjos (31-13 MMA) has recently withdrawn his interest to fight the No. 4 ranked lightweight contender, Islam Makhachev (22-1 MMA).
The pair have nearly been scheduled to fight in the octagon on multiple occasions before the idea was shelved for the time being by the UFC. The closest the fighters have come to making a date official was at UFC 272 in March after Rafael Fiziev – Dos Anjos’s opponent -was forced out of the bout after testing positive for COVID.
Whist the process of finding a replacement went on, Makhachev offered to fill in and take the fight via his social media. However, there was no physical agreement made, and UFC lightweight veteran, Renato Moicano (16-5-1 MMA) was put forward as the official replacement for the fight.
The 37-year-old is now focused again on his original UFC 272 opponent, Rafael Fiziev.
Their bout has now been rescheduled for July 9th and Rafael dos Anjos has also had the time to choose the right words he wanted to use to describe Makhachev on his social media.
“Islam is a p****,” dos Anjos told MMA Fighting. “I took the fight. Straight up, he’s a p****. I took the fight, he took the fight. I went to bed, [I] thought I’m going to fight him, and then in the morning he tried to say otherwise. I’m glad Dana White came over and said the truth.”
“He’s trying to play cool and he’s trying to play, ‘I’m going to take the fight’, Dos Anjos continued. “He said 170, I said 165, and they kept [saying] 170. I was 170 when I was speaking to the UFC at the time. I said, ‘I’ll take this fight against Islam at 170, I just want to fight. I haven’t fought in so long, I had a hard training camp, I want to fight anybody.’ Then in the morning, the deal fell out on his side.”
Rafael dos Anjos eyes up a potential title shot by the end of 2022
Rafael dos Anjos’s issue with Makhachev wasn’t that the 30-year-old didn’t take the fight on short notice, but rather that Islam Makhachev volunteered to replace Fiziev only to turn away from the opportunity when the UFC offered him the bout at 170ib.
Ever since returning to the Lightweight division, Dos Anjos has had ambitions of reclaiming his Lightweight gold, although he admits ‘the division is crazy,’ he states that he sees a scenario in which he and another certain native Brazilian go head-to-head in Brazil later this year.
“I heard the UFC is going to do a big show in Brazil in December, and why not Brazil vs. Brazil? Once I get past Fiziev, me against Charles would be a great fight.” (Transcribed by MMAFighting.com)
Do you think Rafael dos Anjos will reclaim his Lightweight gold?